E3: Sony’s Press Conference

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Sony held their press conference at the Los Angeles Memorial Sports Arena with over 6000 attendees waiting to see what they had to offer up this year, especially in light of the PSN outage. Though they didn’t drop too many bombshells, Sony did their best to get people excited for the Move and their new handheld, the PS Vita. 

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E3: Konami pre-conference brief

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It wasn’t so much of a press event as it was a pre-recorded briefing on what Konami is excited about in 2011. A few games were shown, such as NeverDead, Pro Evolution Soccer 2011, Silent Hill Downpour, MGS Snake Eater for the 3DS, and a teaser for the next Contra at the very end.

Anyone hoping to see Hideo Kojima reveal what his next game is going to be are going to be disappointed, however, as the cagey designer revealed only tidbits of what he was working on including a new “lifestyle” regarding save games.

The briefing started off with a look at the 3DS version of Metal Gear Solid: Snake Eater, the PS2 classic that explored the origins of Solid Snake. For the handheld, players will be able to use the motion sensor to help keep Snake’s balance and even utilize photos taken as camouflage.

Next up was the 3rd person action game, NeverDead, with a MegaDeth scored video to show off some of its action. The Japanese and European developed title will have players star as Bryce, a heroic demon hunter that challenges the demon king 500 years ago but loses with his wife getting murdered in the process. Cursed with immortality by his enemy, Bryce can be blown apart but never die as you try to get him back together should that happen. One shot revealed a rolling head on the floor, probably manipulated by the player, trying to get back to the rest of its body.

Some information was revealed on a new Silent Hill film in production and a small tease for Silent Hill Downpour, the next game in the series, but little else other than that it was coming.

Later, Mark MacDonald of 8-4 visited Hideo Kojima at his studio. “Transfarring” was shown off, a save transfer mechanism that would allow players on the PS3 use the same save for the same game (such as the upcoming Peace Walker) with the portable version, and vice versa so that you don’t miss a beat. Kojima hopes to extend this capability to the PS2/PS3 level, and eventually to the PS3 and NGP.

Kojima didn’t show off a new game so much as he did the new engine that will be running it. Called the “Fox Engine”, it will be used in Kojima’s projects going forward as a multiplatform engine. Development for it started shortly after MGS4 and a jungle scene was displayed as a test environment, though it has nothing to do with the next game whatever it might be.

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Lastly, it was revealed that MGS Peace Walker, Sons of Liberty, and Snake Eater are going to be together in an HD collection in November this year for the PS3 and the Xbox 360. Later in 2012, that will be followed by both Zone of the Enders titles. Far from being tweaked graphically, they’ll also sport new interfaces and a few more tweaks to keep them from feeling like a simple port dumped onto a disc.

As the briefing ended, a gout of flame filled the screen soon forming into a burning “C” with words hinting at the return of a classic series – Contra. As for what Konami has planned, your guess is as good as mine.

E3: A look back on Day One

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Another E3 has come and gone leaving behind clouds, motion controls, and a bevy of sequels. So what does it all mean? I’ve had a few days to gather my thoughts on what we’ve seen on the show floor and behind closed doors, so here are a few ideas on the message left by waggling hands and brutal teddy bears.
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A Holiday Gaming Guide

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So it’s another year of holiday gaming as parents try and figure out just what they should get their kids (or themselves), and I’m willing to bet that a console might be on the minds of those willing to camp out storefronts in Black Friday or battle each other for the last copy of Super Mario Bros. Wii left on the shelves.

With Sony’s new pricing policy for their PS3, Xbox 360 bundles, and the Wii joining the moneymaking fracas, it’s as if it were launch day all over again.

A few days ago while browsing, couple had asked me what kind of games they could get their thirteen-year old daughter on the Xbox 360 and told me what kind of titles she loved to play. They were buying an Xbox for her because her brothers were living elsewhere and wanted to keep her connected, but were wondering what she could play on her own.

After hearing them gush about Guitar Hero, I pointed out Beatles Rock Band. They said she already had it for another system. I asked if she liked to play first-person shooters or sports games and they said no.

I didn’t know what to tell them, only that it was tough finding something for their daughter’s tastes on the Xbox 360 that wasn’t a first-person shooter or a sports game…both of which they said she was not interested in it, but her brothers were. In the end, they opted to get a flat screen TV instead. But if she had been a huge shoot ‘em up fan like her brothers, she’d find more than enough to be happy about on the system.

Her particular needs were very specific, but the question remains the same for many parents and newcomers unfamiliar with all of the gaming jargon that kids, and perhaps as many adults, speak as a second language.

So here’s a little help from Tech-Out on what to look for when you head out into the busy shopping season and are trying to decide which console, and what extra games, you want to bring home.
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E3: Day Three means that I have no more feet…

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It’s the end of Day Three at E3 and I am exhausted. Completely and utterly wiped out. So many games, so little padding left on my feet meant that the end was actually a welcome event. Kudos to everyone at all of the booths that continued to repeat the same spiel again and again all day long over and beyond the three days of the conference. They’re the real heroes.

With that said, I did a final sweep of the halls to see what there was to see and get in a little more play time with the titles that I could get to. So here we go…
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E3: Ubisoft press briefing decompression

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James Cameron and Pele showed up to this thing, which gives you an idea of the kind of mojo Ubisoft was rolling with on the eve of E3. I don’t have an exact time down, but this had to be the longest press conference of the day. The theme of their show was confluence, which in short, is attempting to merge the minds of Hollywood and gaming to create a universe of uber-creativity. We saw some of that, at least conceptually, with Peter Jackson’s King Kong, an original launch title for the 360 that was tied to the movie.

There was a lot of stuff to digest here, most of which dealt with the confluence thinking. I’ll spill my 2 cents about some of the other games. I’ve got my man-crush on Sam Fisher and Splinter Cell: Conviction (seen above) and Reggie will expound on his man-crush on James Cameron’s Avatar. Enjoy, post-jump.
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